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301 S. Magnolia

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Superb Italianate villa built for Prussian-born merchant Henry Ash and his wife Amelia Emilie Ash, who was a native of Mississippi. The house
features the first cupola built in Palestine. The local newspaper in 1883 called the house "the most artistically planned of any place in the city. The house itself is such an airy, graceful structure, that it is a perpetual delight to the eye, and the surroundings are all harmonious and beautiful." It was bought in 1886 by Andrew L. Bowers, and his Irish-born wife Nellie O'Connell Bowers. Remodeled by Bowers twice; Eastlake double galleries were added by local cabinet-maker Walter W. Wainright, and spectacular stair with stained glass to plans by St. Louis architect Charles Dunbar. North Carolina native and local entrepreneur, Bowers was superintendent of bridges &buildings for the I.& G.N., mayor of Palestine four times, banker, and first president and owner of the Palestine Salt & Coal Company. Note rare intact out buildings, including well house/gazebo, carriage house, servants' house, smoke house and greenhouse. West of the Bowers' house and to your left; once stood the railroad executives' mansions, the original general office, and shops and yards of the I.& G. N. The Bowers house was restored in 1970 by local historian Carl Avera and Mrs. H. R. Avera. Illustrated in Alexander & Webb's Texas Homes of the 19th Century. RTHL 1973.
  • History/Heritage
  • Architecture
  • History